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January 9, 2008

On To Michigan (For Half Of Us)

Now that the New Hampshire road show has packed its tents, the presidential primaries now move to Michigan, where the first big-delegate state goes to the polls. What can we expect from the home of American automakers and the bellwether of economic trends? If the polling holds up as shown at Real Clear Politics, it looks like voters will favor the familiar.

On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton holds commanding leads over Barack Obama and John Edwards. Most of the polls show her in the mid-40s, and Obama scores highest at 26 in the Strategic Vision poll. The problem is that all of this polling is rather old. The most recent in RCP's lineup is the November poll from the Detroit News. In fact, it seems rather odd that no one has done a more recent poll for the Democrats in a state where 128 delegates are up for grabs.

Of course, considering the polling disaster we just saw in New Hampshire for the Democrats, it probably won't make much difference.

UPDATE: Early morning brain fade; the Democrats, except for Hillary, decided to abandon Michigan when it moved its primary up in defiance of the DNC. I suspect they'll get their delegates back at the convention, however. Thanks to Mr. Lynn in the comments for the reminder.

For the Republicans, the picture remains clouded. The data is only marginally more fresh than for the Democrats, and it shows three different people in the lead -- McCain, Huckabee, and Romney. The first two can expect some momentum from their victories over the last few days, while Romney had better hope his father's legacy gives him enough support to pull out a victory. After two poor showings, especially relative to the money he spent in Iowa and New Hampshire, he needs a win -- and he's not likely to get it in South Carolina.


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